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tv   Scottish First Ministers Questions  CSPAN  August 25, 2014 12:00am-12:33am EDT

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>> for free transcripts or to give us your comments about this program, visit us on q-and-a .org. program at q and >> coming up, his scottish parliament discussion on the upcoming independence referendum. and the results of a poll, american attitudes towards public education. later, another chance to see "q&a" with charles ringel of new york. british parliament is in recess, so prime minister's questions will not be seen tonight. on september 18, scotland will vote on an independence
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referendum whether to end of their 305-year-old political union with england. members pressed first minister alex salmond. this is about 30 minutes. >> thank you. presiding officer, the first minister and i can agree on two things. he is the preeminent expert on north sea oil.
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he reluctantly entered the debate, saying he did so as a father and grandfather and saying he didn't want future generations to ask why he stood silent. he warned the scottish government had over-estimated gas and oil production by between 45% and 60%. he warned the first minister had over estimated tax revenue by two thousand million pounds a year. we would ask him to explain to him and his grandchildren why he is wrong. >> i hope john and i can agree on more than two things. we agreed just two weeks ago that scotland had the potential to
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be a prosperous, independent country. i think everybody agreed with that in this chamber. let me agree that ian wood is an authority on oil and gas, but not the only one. there are other authorities. but i think what ian has to say should be considered very carefully indeed. the figure i have quoted of up to 24 billion barrels of oil and gas equivalent remaining in the north sea is not the government figure source. it was the figure that the industry has produced and has produced for a number of years and i think is a robust figure. it shows the extraordinary potential that remains in the waters around scotland if the policies are pursued and the stewardship is correct to make sure that the resources work for the scottish people. >> two things. the first minister recognized that ian is an authority. but if he says something he doesn't want to hear, he simply ignores it. that is not good enough. and secondly, i would have imagined that ian knew exactly
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what the first minister said about these figures. he is offering a critique that we must addressed. it is for the public to judge why he disagrees with him now. he said and i quote, relevant to scotland's independence is how long offshore oil and gas production will last. he says young waters mathieu be fully aware that by the time they are of full age, scotland will have finished production and this will hurt things. can the first minister tell our children and grandchildren why he was wrong to give them that warning? >> my headline message for the youth of today, get involved. the oil industry will see you through your lifetime. ian wood, bbc, november 9, 2012.
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yes, he is an authority, and he has been foremost in pointing out the future potential of the oil and gas province. i listened to him on the radio, and he said, and i think he was right to do so, because alec kemp is a foremost authority of modeling of oil and gas and what remains. he said he felt that the figure of 15 to 16.5 billion barrels was own appropriate estimate. incidentally, that come pairs with the o.b.r. estimate of 10 billion over the next 30 years. that is 60% higher than the one offered by the agencies of her majesty's government. but it came over the last few
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days. so i consulted professor alec kemp he is website, and i've got it here. that is absolutely correct. he and his research partner have conducted substantial modeling for future production of oil and gas. he says if target and tax incentive were reduced, it could increase to 15 billion barrels of oil quintavious harrow leapt. it goes further. but there is potential for further develop after 2050. they found in the year 2050, no less than 25 existing known discoveries remain undeveloped. >> order. let's hear the first minister. >> and finishes, thus the ultimate potential of 24 billion barrels of oil equivalent appears plausible.
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so now we have a point of agreement. 16.5 billion to 2050, and 24 billion barrels as the total value. that is a lot of billions of barrels, and scotland should welcome it. [applause] >> well, that will give a lot of confidence to people. because obviously the first minister said he listened to ian. he willfully refused to hear what he was hearing. he deflected the fact that woods said he failed to interserena in the debate because he was misquoted. that is the hallmark of a first minister's approach to
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persuading people to support his life-long political project. whatever is said in the moment, they ignore the substance of the argument. but in his warning, in his warning, ian envisioned far from an independent scotland exporting oil to the rest of the united kingdom, but scotland having to import oil from the united kingdom. he said this preempt expert identified, unfortunately i think scotland will lose on renewables. u.k. is subsidizing pricing. he added of the oil industry most operators -- >> let us hear, please. >> this is about the future of our country.
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>> order. >> he added of the oil industry most operators would feel more confident if scotland was to remain part of the u.k. so i ask the first minister again why use ian drawn to say that in the interest of our children, grandchildren and the generations to come? >> first minister? >> well, i have already pointed out that wood is on the record saying the oil will see you through your lifetime, and he is right to say so. 2050 is not the limit of the oil industry. it will go long beyond that. i've got the transcript of his interview this morning. i spoke to alec kemp two or three times, and he is right on the 15 billion to 16.5 billion that i have quoted is the right sort of range. that is exactly the point i was making. yes, alec kemp says 15 billion to 16.5 billion up to 2050.
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he goes on to say it will be up to 24 billion if you take a future resource in the reserve. this country of scotland with only 16.5 billion barrels of oil, up to 2050, worth one trillion pounds in wholesale value over that period. or to go low, 1.5 trillion. this come has a great curse of 15 billion barrels of oil. every other country in the world would give their eye teeth for such a substantial resource. why did labor party and the labor party's allies think it was a great curse on scotland.
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incidental, having 25% of the off shore energy renewable continent offshore for europe is not a disadvantage. >> order. >> the knighted country is not. it is a wonderful country that deserves not to have its intelligence insulted. >> order. >> it is not a debating point between me and the first minister. it is what a senior person in the oil industry is saying about the future of our country. so let's review the record over the last two years. the first minister said there was legal advice. that is not true. >> order, order.
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>> it is uncomfortable. carry on. >> it has been established that that wasn't true. john swinney said he was in discussions with the bank of england on a union, and that wasn't true. nicolas told s.n.p. conference the n.h.s. in scotland couldn't be privatized. now he says it isn't. >> order. we will get through this a lot quicker if the applauding and jeering will stop. there is your last question. will you just get to it. >> well, let me hope in all optimism you get an answer to the question. scotland's greatest oil expert says it would be bad for scotland. alec doesn't have a plan b on
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currency, or europe or oy. the trouble is this is a case that scotland doesn't trust him because he is a man without a plan. >> first minister. order. >> can i just put on the record that in answer to the first question, wood, i respect his authority, as alec and donald, who have analyzed the scottish government figures and produced their own estimates, which are similar to the estimates of the scottish figure. the up to 24 billion figure is an industry estimate. it has been used by many people. i pointed out the first 16 billion barrels it up to 2050, and alec kemp says there is more to
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come, and the 24 billion looks entirely plausible. on the question of the health service, perhaps if john can't bring himself to agree with me, how about agreeing with unison. that means they can't run down and privatize that from london the way they are doing in england. but what they can do is starve it. they are cutting back on the money provided to the scottish government and putting the scottish government under pressure. unison of the union. john asked me who is to blame for that. i was struck, encouraged and excited by ian davidson's comments of only this week. he identified that labor's failures was the reason for the success and spoke out. the reason are why s.n.p. has done well has more to do with the failure of the labor party, the lack of organization.
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the s.n.p. have become what the labor party should have been. his argument was scottish waters moved from glasgow to scotland. many of them became supporters. they didn't want the politics of labor. >> order. conclusion, first minister. >> i am available to quote ian davidson against joe and. perhaps the reality is the labor party in scotland don't have a plan a, never mind a plan b. >> order. order. question two. >> thank you. to ask the first minister when he will next meet the prime minister? >> no plans. >> wood is the most respected business figure and for 2 1/2
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years in this debate, he has kept his own council. he has stayed neutral. as he said yesterday, he had no wish to get involved. now i just heard all the things the first minister has been firing at sir ian's critique yesterday. what i haven't heard and what i am asking the first minister is this. why does he think sir ian feels so compelled to speak out. >> sir ian wood wanted to clarify that his opinion was that the oil reserves were between 15 billion and 16.5 billion, his estimate. i am pointing out that i think that is based on the forecasts of professor alec kemp, who points out today in his aberdeen university blog, that that applies up to 2050. there are already ole fields on the west coast, which are going
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to produce beyond 2050. alec kemp has identified over 100 oil discoveries that are not in the calculations to 2050. he and industry figures believe that therefore the over-all value in terms of reserves in the oil province is up to 24 billion, which is the industry estimate that u.k. oil and gas have. u.k. oil and gas, individual companies gave us a briefing from british petroleum, from tim smith, the vice president. 41 billion barrels produced at 2012. potentially 27 billion barrels yet to produce, beyond 2050. so if the industry estimate is up to 24 billion, and if major companies are saying 27 million. they they not bring themselves to realize that whether it is 16.5 billion in 2050, whether it is 27 billion confront 2050,
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that is many, many bills of barrels of oil and in wholesale terms worth trillions of pounds. every country in the world would believe that is a tremendous asset. why would the labor party believe it is a liability? >> with all due respect to the first minister, that is not why sir ian said he felt the need at this critical time to speak out. sir ian has no worlds left to conquer. he is not trying to win any votes. he just wants the scottish people to know the facts before they make this irreversible decision the throughout this whole debate, the first minister has twisted facts and simply closed his ears to inning that doesn't fit his life-long obsession of independence.
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but not everybody out there is like that. people want to know what is best for their children and their grandchildren. so can the first minister just have the decency at this late stage to concede sir ian's point, that our young voters be fully aware. >> order.
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for goodness sake, this is an important argument. >> order. settle down. forecast blog today points out, there's 125 known willing discoveries which undeveloped in # this is a long-term business that will be with us for come.tions to the westminster government have underestimated significance of -- we underplayed the value of the resource. of the --t
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given the history and track it notof westminster, is --sible that i think most people in scotland say let's use the resources for the benefit of the scottish people. >> order. scottishked how the government will ensure the future of ship building. tuesday i met with, i spoke -- tomorrow i'll visit the shipyard itself.
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we all express a very serious sucht that the yard with closed.l was
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there's no question of the that they wish to continue ship building. the view is shared, and how a climatesure that for 12 new vessels and the using investment will be support of ferguson's and the economy. >> when he made his statement on i did think he -- there have been substantial orders placed with this yard and opportunity given the new generation of ly, and we have great hopes that we'll revise a that can where .ontinue under new ownership two things encourage me. one is that the determination of work force.
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one thing has been unanimous, every commentator around this issue, that no one has thetioned the skill, dedication, application and resolve of that work force. person in thise chamber should give them maximum support. that encouragings me greatly. second thing is i was encourage by the statement of receiver, because he made it quite clear that he was moving deadline in terms of offers to be analyzed at 5:00 this evening. and in that statement he said he was moving to that deadline because he wanted to make sure aat there was the chance continuation of ferguson's as an ongoing concern. particularly looking at holding the swat force together, and making sure that are prospects for the few. so although we have not, although there will still be more anxious days for the work fore, that we have prone
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substantial encouragement and that encouragement is founded not just on the determination of this government and the support of everyone this chamber, but the resolve and the resilience of the shipyard workers themselves. >> thank you. scottish government says to the -- >> we welcome it. local government will be an essential element of independent scott land. a statement that can onlying guaranteed by written constitution. first minister for his reply. he's aware that the previous in 2012, the first
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that theagree with me only way to get our democratic society in scott lab is by voting yes on the 18th of september to ensure that westminster governments do not interfere in the democratic struck thursday that we within a future scott land. >> i agree with that position. of john wilson's question, i any, is very opposite. of vital a range institutions, which could, with constitution have the protection -- aat is one of the benefits of written constitution. commonwealthad the games, and it was 71 nations and territories competing in this games, with the exception of new seal lab which has a basic plow, of thesegle one
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independent countries has a written constitution which preserves and protects the rights of their citizens as well rights.iating clear i agree that the position of local government would be a written in constitution. set out, independence offers the opportunity to potential ofast scott land's talented population. a jobsek we published plan for scotland, we can get more and better job opportunity helping our young people to realize their ambitions here in scotland. it does seem to me that while we offer a declaration of opportunity and neil finley and in theleagues conservative party have nothing whatsoever to declare.
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>> we know that the forecast is a mere 60% out. has said itnister was voodoo economics that would scotland.rate and while he apologized to what dr. anna greg or says, is a complete and utter lie about any privatization and the event of a new vote. >> first minister. >> well, i know it's extremely for him, to try and deflect on the position that lots of people in scotland agree for the surge of support protecting our national health service through independence for scott lab and a written constitution. attention,play close
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making the point that as the health service budget and public budget is reduced in england, that he surely doesn't that privatization is intended to increase the health service budget in england. as that happens, it will happen, as identified through financial pressure. luckily of course -- >> order. what has happened in wales. 3% decline. so i believe that the labor to reduceales wanted real term spending on the national melt service, which believe.n't but we believe that they're the financialrom pressure from westminster. so i agree with the labor party england, that england's privatization is endangering the and i agreece
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with -- [applause] >> order. order. question six. you.ank what progress has been made in mortality rates. >> first minister? onwe we come the figures monday the 18th of august. showing the mortality rates observe 25% in the last 20 years. research,of cancer and we endorsed the new strategy, aimed at pushing cancer survival to three and four within the next 20 years. in recent years we've been to improve scotland's cancer treatment infrastructure, including 22 million pounds for the new center now being built to help meet the rising demand for radio therapy treatment over the next 10 years.
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spoking havele contributed to the reduce in death rates. does the first minister agree that the gap between the lowest and highest groups is still far for too many cancers, and that programs that help earliestncer at the stage are absolutely vital to ensuring that everyone in savingd receives a life treatment they need, which only a publicly funded and clinically service canh provide. why thei do, and that's government is putting an investment into early cancer detection. and invest a further 12 million program.eening recognizes the signs and symptoms of cancer and people to get checked
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if they're worried. shows that every patient regardless of where they live receives timely treatment and followup. thise that everyone in chamber understands the importance much protecting and national melt service in scott land. it is absolutely vital, we believe that can be done through scottish independence. if there's an alternative route it, then it better get spelled out. but the labor party members the --remember, now move to


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